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Focus Guided Journal Review - The Therapist's Bookshelf
Focus Guided Journal Review

Focus Guided Journal Review

Focus: A Guided Journal to Create Lasting Change in Your Life by Craig Smith, LCSW


The Focus journal is designed to help you carve out a space in your day for intentionality and gratitude. Each entry includes space to recognize recent wins, notice something you are thankful for, reflect on a powerful quote and journal. Users are also have space to choose affirmations relevant to them and the day ahead.

About the author:

Craig Smith is a LCSW with a private practice in Utah. You can learn more about him here or follow him on Instagram.

Order your Focus journal and use code TB15 at checkout for 15% off!

What we love:

I loved using the Focus Journal as a part of a mindfulness practice.  It was easy to implement and set a great tone for the day. I had never purposefully and regularly listed recent victories before using this journal but I found that to be empowering.

My favorite thing about this journal has to be the affirmations. There is a long list in the back of possible affirmations for the day plus instructions for creating your own.  I enjoyed finding a few that fit and using them throughout the day to keep me focused.

What we didn’t:

I find blank pages a bit intimidating so my personal preference is lined journal pages.

The only real struggle I had with the journal was it’s overarching focus on positivity. I’m a bit of an existentialist, so only focusing on the good didn’t feel authentic for me.  That’s relatively easy to address in the journal / reflection section though.

Clinical Use:

I recommend the Focus Journal for therapists as part of a self-care plan.  I think we can easily recommend it to our clients who are working on developing journaling or gratitude practices.



This post is one in a series of planner and journal reviews to help you get ready for 2019.  You can find the roundup of all the planners I reviewed here.







If you know of another planner or a book we need to review, let us know here or tell us about it in the comments. Make sure you’re also following The Therapist’s Bookshelf on Facebook and Instagram.

Many therapists enjoy recommending books to their clients to supplement the work they are doing together. We also use books to help ourselves grow as people and practitioners. Remember though that books are never a replacement for real human connection or for therapy when it’s needed. If you find yourself needing a therapist, a great place to start is Psychology Today. If you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or someone else, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.

Focus: A Guided Journal to Create Lasting Change in Your Life


Final Grade



  • Created by a therapist
  • Great part of gratitude practice


  • Some pages lack structure

Le Shepard

Le Shepard, LPC earned her MA in Counseling Psychology from Texas Woman's University in Denton, TX. She sees clients face to face at Wise County Christian Counseling and works with individuals or couples through her online-only private practice. 1000 Hills Counseling & Consulting. Le loves to read, adventure, and play with her corgi or kids.

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